DC Shorts Film Festival

September 19-28, 2019

Screenplay Competition Casting

Thank you for your interest in reading for the 2018 DC Shorts Screenplay Competition.

The DC Shorts Screenplay Competition is a very different kind of screenwriting competition. A panel of reviewers consisting of filmmakers, screenwriters and critics reviewed over 70 screenplays — and selected the top 6 to be performed in front of a live audience! We need actors to read for this performance. This is a non-paid gig. SAG-AFTRA members may participate. To participate, please review the script breakdowns for each project. If you believe there is a role (or two) you wish to be considered for:

(1) Make sure you are available on Friday, September 14 @ 10:00 am for a live audition, 12:00 pm rehearsals and the 7:00 pm evening performance. If you are not available all day on 9/14 — do not participate.
(2) Email your headshot (JPG only) and resume (PDF only) to the email address listed. The subject line must contain the ROLE for which you want to be considered.
(3) Do not send large files, Word documents, or ay photo format other than JPG — your email will automatically be rejected.
(4) If you want to be considered for multiple scripts, you must email your information to each project.

After sending your information, the writers will review your information and will call those they believe are best suited. Those contacted will “audition” via telephone and might be asked to attend the live audition on Friday, September 14 @ 10:00 am at the E Street Cinema, corner of 11th and E Street NW (Metro Center station). After the live audition, selected actors will rehearse the piece before the performance at 7:00 pm. DC Shorts does not interfere with the casting process. Each writer has a different process.

Do not call or email the DC Shorts office with questions or updates.

If you want to be considered for multiple scripts, you must email your information to each project.  No resumes will be considered after September 12, 2018.


To be considered for a role in WHITE FERRARI, email your headshot and resume to (please cut and paste email address) cast.of.whiteferrari@dcshorts.com. Make sure to include the role in the subject line.

SYNOPSIS: Winnie tracks down her ex-lover, who betrayed her and absconded with their ill-gotten gains, to finally take back what rightfully belongs to her in this action short. 

WINNIE (early 30s, any ethnicity) is a fast thinker, quick on her feet – her mental wheels are always spinning, looking for an angle on any given situation. A life-long criminal, Winnie can be a hard read, employing a placid exterior and keeping her cards close to her vest. As a woman, she’s often underestimated, but that would be a mistake. She doesn’t go looking for violence, but she can definitely handle herself in a fight.

BOB (mid to late 30s, White) is a good looking, fairly conventional man with fairly conventional goals – he wants to settle down and own his own business. He just also happens to be a criminal and good in a fight.

DEPUTY SHERIFF CAMILLA PEREZ-BADIA (mid to late 30s, Latino) is a genuine salt-of-the-earth woman, and aims to serve and protect her community. She’s earnest and by the book, and trusts people until they give her a reason not to. One day, she’ll take over as sheriff of her small Southwestern town.

CHAD/OBNOXIOUS DUDE #1 (20s, White) is your typical bro, appropriating cultures, freely flaunting his privilege, and disseminating misogyny wherever he goes – like smoke out of a tailpipe.



To be considered for a role in STANDOFF, email your headshot and resume to (please cut and paste email address) cast.of.standoff@dcshorts.com. Make sure to include the role in the subject line.

SYNOPSIS: A distraught scientist known for advancing human gene editing decades ago holds his grandchildren hostage in a tense standoff with negotiators over the true implications of his work.

DR. CHARLES WITTEN: Caucasian male. Age late 70s to mid-80s. Around six-feet tall. He’s a white-haired, prominent retired scientist. Widower, father and grandfather. His anxiety is reflected in his disheveled clothing.

NEGOTIATOR: Caucasian male. Age 40s to 50s. Around six-feet tall. He’s an authoritative figure with local law enforcement. Retains his composure because it’s his job to do so. He’s a fan of Dr. Witten’s and his scientific achievements.

CASEY: Caucasian female. Age mid- to late-30’s. Around 5-1/2 feet tall. Dr. Witten’s only daughter. She’s the mother of two young children. She’s worried about the safety of her children being held hostage by her father, but must also maintain her loving feelings for her father during this crisis.

EDDIE: Caucasian male. Age 8. Dr. Witten’s grandson. (under-five role)

TACTICAL OFFICER 1: Male. No specific nationality. (under-five role)

TACTICAL  OFFICER 2: Female. No specific nationality. (under-five role)



To be considered for a role in SOMBRA CITY, email your headshot and resume to (please cut and paste email address) cast.of.sombracity@dcshorts.com. Make sure to include the role in the subject line.

SYNOPSIS: Sombra City is a complex, romantic, film noir set in the near future where murder for hire is legal – as long as you follow the rules.

ELLIS : (Male) Mid 30’s to mid 40’s . A sensitive tough guy. Handsome but weathered. Think Indiana Jones.

ARIADNA: (Female) Late 20’s to mid 40’s A manipulative femme fatale. Sophisticated. Smart. Gorgeous.

DRIVER: (Female) Early 20’s. Spunky. Future punk.

VOICE on Phone: Eery and authoritative.


cherry glazed

To be considered for a role in CHERRY GLAZED, email your headshot and resume to (please cut and paste email address) cast.of.cherryglazed@dcshorts.com. Make sure to include the role in the subject line.

SYNOPSIS: A crime boss is forced to get her hands dirty to clean up her subordinates mess when they fail to handle a job.

RachelFemale, 32, Asian, look very similar to Lucy Liu, petite, slender, could pass for young 20-something. Uses that to her advantage when needed to appear vulnerable, when she clearly isn’t. Smart, no-nonsense attitude usually, but can play the sweet, innocent type when needed. grew up on the rough side, but very smart, and tough enough to run a crew. No one intimidates her. No tattoos.

Alternate Casting for Rachel: ethnicity is open, doesn’t have to be Asian. Qualities remain the same.

MarkMale, 35, White or Hispanic, average build, but needs to have athletic ability to carry out crime jobs. Never went to college, is not a leader, but can be very intimidating to those who don’t know him. Definitely has a presence. Grew up on the rough side. Works for Rachel’s crew. Minimal tattoos. Would have had more, but Rachel won’t allow it as could be identifier markings.

Cashier/JoeMale, 45-60, white, a jollier Dean Norris type. Loves his small town, hasn’t been much else. Loves his wife, especially her baking. Genuinely nice guy, but since being robbed, is a bit more cautious, however, his empathetic big heart ends up being his downfall. Prefer zero, or very few tattoos. Bit of a beer belly. Bald, balding, or thinning hair (not comical hair though).

CharlotteFemale, 30’s, white or open ethnicity, athletic, strong build (Michelle Rodriguez build). Physically capable of taking down anyone of any size. Naturally wavy, long sandy blonde hair. No visible tattoos. Works for Rachel as part of her crew as her right-hand person, though she obviously has made mistakes. Grew up alongside Rachel on the rough side. Smart, but not as smart as Rachel. 


at Death’s Door

To be considered for a role in AT DEATH’S DOOR, email your headshot and resume to  (please cut and paste email address) cast.of.atdeathsdoor@dcshorts.com. Make sure to include the role in the subject line.

SYNOPSIS: Daryl, a high school teenager, is plagued by depression and surrounded by an environment filled with abuse and neglect. As he tries to survive it all, he sinks deeper and deeper into a state of hopelessness. That is, until one night, Daryl finds solace from a door that mysteriously appears in the middle of his room. As it continually beckons him, he struggles with the thought of whether life is better on the other side.

Daryl: African-American, Male, 16-19. Depressed loner of few words.

Mother: African-American, Female, 35-45. Business woman.

Father: African-American, Male . Mid-Late 40’s. A labor worker with a tough exterior.

Angel (Voice-Over): Any Ethnicity. Female, Soft-spoken, almost angelic.

Ring Leader: African-American, Male, 16-19. An over compensating bully.

Supporting Cast (Small Speaking Roles)

Teacher: Any Ethnicity.  30s, Male

Counselor: Any Ethnicity. Late 20s-Early 30s, Male

Classmate 1: Any Ethnicity. 16-19, Any Sex

Classmate 2: Any Ethnicity. 16-19, Any Sex


Classmates/School Kids: High school aged, any ethnicity and sex


by any other name

To be considered for a role in BY ANY OTHER NAME, email your headshot and resume to(please cut and paste email address) cast.of.byanyothername@dcshorts.com. Make sure to include the role in the subject line.

SYNOPSIS: We all know the story of Romeo & Juliet..or so we thought we did…but now we learn the true story of what really happened to the tragic lovers.  

Juliet: Female, 20-40, this Juliet of Romeo and Juliet fame, but now a little older and a little more wary of the world.

Mike: Male, 20-40, a tough guy who is hopelessly in love with Juliet

Nurse: Female, 30-70, Juliet’s nurse, confidante, mother figure

Prince: Male, 30-50, Mike’s best friend, a self-confident leader who wants to support his friend but is also wary of Juliet.

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